Charles Sturt University
Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation

Professor Leigh Schmidtke

Professor Leigh Schmidtke

B. App. Sc., (MLS, UTAS), M. App. Sc., (Research, UTAS), PhD -Wine Science, Chemometrics

Professor Schmidtke commenced his research career as a microbiologist with the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, seeking to identify putative vaccine candidates for a range of bacterial pathogens of farmed Atlantic salmon and freshwater trout. He taught microbiology at the University of Tasmania prior to working as a chemist and microbiologist for Southcorp Wines.

On joining Charles Sturt University he undertook a PhD in wine chemistry to investigate the impact of deliberate infusion of minute quantities of oxygen during the wine making process upon the flavour and volatile chemical profile of Shiraz wine.  He has developed rapid methods of analysis using infra-red spectroscopy for vine wood and petiole nutrient status, grape sample discrimination and pathogen detection.

Professor Schmidtke's work developing rapid analytical methods for sample composition and discrimination continues and he is supervising a Graham Centre PhD student investigating the application of handheld Raman spectroscopy for discrimination of meat from varying finishing production systems in conjunction with meat science researchers in the NSW Department of Primary Industries.

Professor Schmidtke's recent work has focused upon developing metabolomic models using targeted and untargeted analysis that demonstrate the impact of abiotic and biotic stress upon plant growth, grape berry maturation, chemical composition of grapes and wine and the impact these have upon the sensory profile of wine, providing insight to viticultural management practises for efficient grape production.  He has collaborations with UNSW researchers developing novel and rapid ambient mass spectroscopy based approaches for grape and wine volatile analysis, and collaborations with University of Adelaide viticulture and wine science research teams to develop understanding of the impact of biotic stress upon grape and wine composition.

Professor Schmidtke was appointed Director of the National Wine and Grape Industry Centre (NWGIC) in late 2017 having undertaking this role in an interim capacity since 2016. He collaborates widely to seek better understanding of the natural world through careful experimental design, rigorous analytical measures of composition, sensory evaluation and statistical modelling.

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Recent Publications

View all Leigh Schmidtke's publications at CRO

Longo, R., Blackman, J. W., Antalick, G., Torley, P. J., Rogiers, S. Y. & Schmidtke, L. M. 01 Jan 2018. Harvesting and blending options for lower alcohol wines: a sensory and chemical investigation.  In: Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture. 98, 1, p. 33-42 10 p.

Grant-Preece, P., Barril, C., Schmidtke, L. M. & Clark, A. C. 15 Mar 2018. Impact of fluorescent lighting on the browning potential of model wine solutions containing organic acids and iron. In: Food Chemistry. 243, p. 239-248 10 p.

Longo, R., Blackman, J., Torley, P., Rogiers, S. & Schmidtke, L. 15 Jan 2017. Changes in volatile composition and sensory attributes of wines during alcohol content reduction. In: Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture. 97, 1, p. 8-16 9 p.

Šuklje, K., Antalick, G., Meeks, C., Blackman, J. W., Deloire, A. & Schmidtke, L. M. 30 Nov 2017. Grapes to wine: The nexus between berry ripening, composition and wine style. 10th International Symposium on Grapevine Physiology and Biotechnology. International Society for Horticultural Science, Vol. 1188, p. 43-50 8 p. (Acta Horticulturae; vol. 1188)

Grant-Preece, P., Barril, C., Schmidtke, L. & Clark, A. 2017. Impact of fluorescent lighting on Oxidation of Model wine solutions containing organic acids and iron. In: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. p. 1-11 11 p.

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